Evolution of Nike

  • The founding

    The founding
    Phil Knight a college graduate from Oregon State where he ran track and field for coach Bowerman, used his previous knowledge of the manufacturing industry being cheaper in Japan than Germany and Bowerman using his tailoring skills that he learned from a shoe smith impose a 50/50 ownership business plan, establishing Blue Ribbon Sports shortly after Knight's graduation where these Japanese shoes were made to replicate/ improve upon German shoes which were believed to be the best at the time.
  • Keeping it moving

    Bowerman proposed a new shoe design to the Tiger shoe company, one that would provide the right support for runners with a cushioned innersole, soft sponge rubber in the forefoot and top of the heel, hard sponge rubber in the middle of the heel, and a firm rubber outsole. This design would turn out to be both a major success and source of conflict between Blue Ribbon and its Japanese supplier.
  • Things get messy

    Things get messy
    The Tiger Cortez dropped in 1967 and became an instant hit for its comfortable, sturdy, and stylish design.
    Around the time of its success, though, relations soured between Blue Ribbon and Tiger. Knight claims that the Japanese company was seeking a way out of its exclusive deal with Blue Ribbon and tried to sink the company. Tiger claims to have discovered Blue Ribbon Sports selling their own version of the Tiger Cortez under a new line of shoes they called "Nike."
  • The change

    Cutting ties with Onitsuka Tiger (now Asics), Blue Ribbon Sports becomes Nike Inc., using swoosh logo created by Portland State University student Carolyn Davis for $35
  • The falling out was just the beginning

    The falling out was just the beginning
    the two formally split in 1971 with a lawsuit from Tiger following. A judge eventually settled that both companies could sell their own versions of the model, leading to the only sneaker to become a best-selling model for two different shoe companies as the Nike Cortez and the Tiger Corsair. Coming into existence proper on May 30, 1971, Nike, Inc.
  • Traction begins to spread

    Traction begins to spread
    Romanian tennis player Ilie Nastase becomes the first athlete to sign an endorsement with Nike.
  • Advancements

    Nike introduces patented "Air" technology with new Tailwind shoe.
  • Prominent Growth

    Prominent Growth
    Nike completes IPO with a price of 18 cents a share.
  • Jordans

    Nike signs Michael Jordan, launching Air Jordan series.
  • Promotions Promotions Promotions

    Promotions Promotions Promotions
    Nike drops ad for new Air Max shoes set to The Beatles' "Revolution," making it the first ad to use the band's music.
  • Nike as we know it begins to surface

    Nike as we know it begins to surface
    First "Just Do It" campaign launches with ad featuring 80-year-old running icon Walter Stack running across the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Gaining exposure

    Gaining exposure
    "Bo Knows" ad campaign drops featuring baseball and football star Bo Jackson.
  • Big Steps

    Big Steps
    First Niketown store opens in Portland, Oregon.
  • Taking Action

    Taking Action
    Activist Jeff Ballinger publishes report exposing low wages and poor working conditions among Indonesian Nike factories. Nike responds by instating its first factory codes of conduct.
  • Change contiues

    Change contiues
    In the face of widespread protest, Nike raises the minimum age of its workers, increases monitoring, and adopts U.S. OSHA clean-air standards in overseas factories.
  • Period: to

    Nike continues to grow and Prosper

    In 2002 Nike acquires surf-apparel company Hurley. Nike signs Lebron James and Kobe Bryant in 2003.
    2004 was a good year Nike acquires Converse for $309 million. Phil Knight steps down as CEO and president of Nike but retains chairman role as William D. Perez becomes the company's new CEO. Following Nike signs Derek Jeter in 2008 and becomes official supplier for NFL apparel in 2012 followed by becoming the official supplier for NBA apparel in 2015.